May 22, 2011 by staff
Bernard Hopkins, The inspiration was the legendary heavyweight boxer Archie Moore, who came to Montreal to fight the much younger Yvon Durelle in 1958. A natural parallel enough for 46 year old Bernard Hopkins, a multiple world champion in two weight classes he was trying to make history at the Bell Centre on Saturday. And did. In make a copy of his first fight with Jean Pascal, Hopkins weathered the storm early and then took control of the fight as the night wore on, punish the man 18 years younger than him with a relentless attack.
Hopkins (02/05/1952) is the oldest man to win a world boxing title, and one of the oldest individual athletes to win a world championship.
“I feel as of 46 tonight, I felt more like 36,” Hopkins said. “I can say I’m a great fighter, it was exciting, I think everyone enjoyed themselves.”
The judges each had Hopkins ahead on points after round 12; the card read 115-113, 116-112, and 115-114.
Despite a late charge of WBC titleholder Pascal of Montreal – with a foot full of Bell Centre and its corner fiercely urges him – Hopkins did enough to win.
The result was greeted with boos, but the Montreal boxing public is sophisticated enough to know, in your heart, that Pascal did not do enough to win and in the end, briefly puzzled Pascal refused to surrender their title belts more.
“Bernard fought a great fight, it’s a great champion… He has a great defense and knows a lot of tricks,” said a deflated Pascal after the fight. “These two matches will take me to the next level, I learned a lot from Bernard and his style.”
Hopkins will be remembered as a show for all ages, in which a box was younger, fitter man – although in fairness the wily veteran has taken up permanent residence in the head with an incessant Pascal psychological.
Against almost any other fighter, Pascal probably would have won by the hometown crowd.
Hopkins went first to a customized version of Frank Sinatra “My Way” – with backup singers dressed sequin expected of him in the ring.
Pascal, the champion, was escorted into the ring for a couple of rappers, and went along with Hopkins, who was wearing his customary black ski mask in the center of the ring.
Pascal then confronted the 46-year-old, opening his black and gold dress to reveal a shirt that read: “Are you willing to take the test?” – A reference to previous reports that Hopkins Pascal using performance enhancing drugs.
Hopkins smiled and gave a slight push.
For all the tension and atmosphere, or boxer got a sense in the first round.
The second was more eventful, with a combination of fast and Pascal landing punches against Hopkins at the end of the round is slipped a lunging right and Pascal got a few rights of their own quickly.
In the third, Pascal Hopkins shook with solid left hand, but Hopkins quickly responded with a blast that hurt the champion.
Pascal had promised to put Hopkins away in four – and after a sedate opening round his tongue out at Hopkins Pascal, leading to champion unleashed a furious barrage of punches, none of which did much damage.
But as the round ended, Pascal landed a combination that seemed to do some damage.
In the sixth round, Hopkins mocked new champion aged 28, triggering the language and beat him for rivets and leaning on it – in the hood, Hopkins said something to Pascal and walked away, although it is clear that outraged the Figher Montreal, who tried to reach the opponent before being led away by officials.
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